Fassmer and the Federal Office of Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support (BAAINBw) have signed a contract for new experimentation and test support ships.

The contract signing for the design and construction of the vessels took place on 22 July.

Wehrtechnische Dienststelle (WTD) 71 will operate the ships. It is the Bundeswehr technical centre for ships and naval weapons, maritime technology, and research.

The centre has a total of nine sea-going vessels with special capabilities for the performance of its tasks.

WTD 71 project manager Thomas Wallner said: “WTD 71 is looking forward to the new ships with their modern and contemporary equipment, which will be delivered in 2023, and which will be then the highly visible expression of defence-related investigations and tests in the Eckenförder Bay for the next 30 years.”

The two new identical vessels are known as ‘Messboote Seeversuche Küste’ in German. The name means ‘sea and shore trial instrumentation ships’.

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They will be designed in accordance with the civilian standards and altered to suit the unique needs of defence tests.

According to BAAINBw, the new experimentation and support vessels will support the securing and recovery of torpedoes during trials.

They will also perform submarines escort missions during shallow water testing, as well as underwater autonomous vehicles deployment and diving missions.